200221 – Morning Pages

Quick and dirty post today to talk about things that are clouding my head. Damn the cloud.

9:21. Starbucks, Versova.

There is no feeling better than an empty, cold Starbucks store with fast Internet! I just came here, got myself a coffee, and now parked on a chair as I type this. This is what an ideal day would be like for me. Have my mornings to myself. Ease into the daily grind. Manage things. And then sleep.

Yeah, I have a lot of work today as well. But since it’s a Saturday, no one is chasing me and thus I can plan my time the way I want to. This does not mean that I can slack. I just need to ensure that I use the time optimally. And work needs to be done. And thus I will keep this short.

Lemme see what’s on the top of my head.

1 Goa. I am going “back” to Goa next week. I am still on the fence about living in Mumbai or Goa. Thanks to this week in Mumbai, I am nudging towards Mumbai. The work ecosystem is incredible here and the phones work and people are available to meet. Yeah, am done with virtual jams, a handshake (or even a fist bump) is irreplaceable. The place allows for serendipity to happen. I could meet AS the other day cos he “guessed” that I would be at the Starbucks. I bumped into Nirav because we were hanging out at the same place. With both these people, I would never ever be able to chat on Zoom and get into interesting conversations.

I think this virtual world of working from anywhere is not sustainable. Us humans are social animals and we need to serve our primal urges. Of course, we are changing but at the core we are primal! But then, I could be wrong. I have been famously wrong about a lot of things in life. My most glorious failure is when the touch phones came in. I stuck to my Blackberry Bold because I loved the feedback that the buttons gave me when I typed like a maniac! I wrote off touch-screen phones. Look at them now. The other thing that I was terribly wrong about was fashionable masks. Rishi told me that we can work on making fancy, glittery masks but I told him that no one would use the fancy ones. People would want safety over anything else. But look at them now. They now make wedding dresses and matching masks. I know people that have some 10 different masks to go along with what they are wearing!

2. aPicADay. I have been on this streak since the beginning of the year where I am posting a pic a day on my public Instagram profile. I am beginning to lose interest in that. May be cos am holed up inside a lot? Maybe I am so busy with daal-roti efforts that I am stuck for inspiration? I dont know. But I need to reset it. No, I will not stop with it. Even if I dont have anything interesting to say, I will continue to post whatever boring ones I can click.

3. Ankur Tewari. I am listening to him croon on his guitar as I type this. And I love it! Here’s the track for the day.

4. Saurabh Garg’s IPO. Here’s the mad idea of the day. I have been thinking about this for a few days. And I will put this in action today. The idea is fairly simple. I will go to all the people that trust me and can “bet” on me and ask them for a 5 lakh rupee investment in me! I will create this fund and take bets on things that I’ve always wanted to do. In exchange, I will promise half of whatever I make in life to those who invest (to be distributed in proportion to what they invest in me). Of course, there is no chance that any of these ideas will work out (remember am wrong a lot?) but I will take a shot. One life.

Most of these ideas will be ludicrous but that’s ok. And I will ask only the closest friends. And the ones I reach out to are the ones that will have enough and more lying around to allow me to play. And if I lose their money, they would not feel bad about it.

One of my principles in life is to never mix money and relationships but I am lately realising that I need to depend more on people that care for me, rather than seeking solace in strangers.

Let’s see how this goes. In case you want to invest in me, lemme know.

5. Nothing else. Time to get back to work. These last few days have been maddening. So much so that am unable to focus on my babies. Fuck focus, am unable to even read emails, respond to texts or return phone calls. This is not like me. I hate when people go incommunicado (I got the spelling right by myself!!!) and I would never ever do this. But I haven’t been able to. It sucks. Deep down I cry about it. But I don’t know what to do about it. There’s no excuse for this and it’s the worst thing ever. But thanks for the patience and understanding of my partners, things are ok. I hope this phase passes soon. And I am back in action.

This is it for the time being. And no, no #book2 today either.

Over and out.

PS: I must write someday how my best work happens when I have the money to not bother about basics! #note2self

190221 – Morning Pages

Quick post today. Did not have time to write, format, edit, spell-check etc.

Read at peril.

4:59 AM

I slept at 2ish. I was up at 4ish. I have way too much work on my plate and thus this thievery of sleep. I know this is not good but I have to juggle this. On top of this, people I care for are being dicks and that’s affecting my output. But I shall remain calm and carry on.

I will write this alongside work. I will steal moments and every time I take a break I will write this. I have a question to start things with. What to do about morning pages on days like today? I mean I don’t have a minute to die and yet I want the non-stop streak? Do I just log in and post a para and get over with it? Or do I actually prioritize this over others? Do I not count the days I don’t write 1000 500 words?

5:43. Met ASTwitter yesterday. He gave me a reality check. I am lucky to have him around in my life. He asked me tough questions about what I am doing in life (when I told him am thinking to shuttle between Mumbai and Goa). He made me realize that I am being an irrational fool. Something RGMDI has told me often! Thing is, if I cant convince him, I don’t think I can convince anyone else. He makes me see the mirror and unlike all the other people I know, he’s super blunt!

6:37. I like this. Work deeply without interruptions. Break. Write something random. Probably forget what was clouding your head at 4:59. Think of things to write. Recommend music. Like, right now, am listening to this one

7:44. Took a break. Showered. Waiting for clock to hit 7:54 so that I can leave for Starbucks. I am so fucked with work. I am going to get so many stinkers that it’s not funny. Anyhow.

While I was showering, an epiphany happened. Probably cos of this stranger I met yesterday at Starbucks. So this girl walked up to the community table that I generally sit on. She goes, can I sit here. I was like, sure. And then she said, without me asking, I went to give up and I just could not. Took me a while to understand what she was talking about. Once it dawned on me, of course, I had to intervene. We got talking and she was there for an hour or so. We talked and I hope she went home fine and she’s ok now. The point is while talking to her, I revealed all the darkest secrets about me – you know, problems with work, money, relationships, Mumbai, Goa, life, et al. And I realized that it is super duper easy to talk to a stranger. I’ve never felt this comfortable talking to anyone about my issues. Not even to SG2, VG, VK, or AG (le seale, tera naam aa gaya). May be that’s why I depend on a blog? Maybe that is what inspires me to live in public?

Another thing I realized is that when going gets tough, pushy-ness often tilts you over the edge. Like right now, I am being pulled in like 5 directions by 5 people. And I am this close to giving up. But of course, I cant. Again, that’s not the point. The point is that I just need to become less pushy with people around me. I’ve seen how toxic things and work and cultures can get. I need to become nicer.

The last thing I am realising now is that I am getting old. You know, how it creeps up on you? I was very sure of pulling an all-nighter today. But guess what? I fell asleep and couldn’t finish my things. Growing old is no fun 🙁

So that.

I think that’s about it. Need to move my butt. Need to decide what to do of the morning pages on the day when I don’t have Internet. Or when I have so much work that I cant write. Like today.

It’s 7:54. Gotta go.

180221 – Morning Pages

A note on my scattered-ness and a dump of things in my head.

8 AM. Starbucks Worli.

This trip to Mumbai, I am having a bit of a bad run. Busy more than bad. I am so busy with work that I don’t have time to do anything at all. And old age is not helping. I get tired easily and I need those 7 hours of sleep. The house continues to be a mess. Ok. This is beginning to look like a rant. Lemme not do this.

Back to morning pages.

So, I am at Worli right now. I have a meeting at 1030 and to avoid traffic, I came in early and have parked myself at this Starbucks. I can do whatever in life but I can NOT get stuck in traffic. It takes my soul away like mad. So, Starbucks.

I am kinda scattered in my head right now. I don’t know what to do or write. There are way too many thoughts in my head. This is the first time am feeling scattered and overwhelmed. Of course, the entire world can see my problem with attention. They call it a problem, I call it diverse interests. Listening to this. On loop. Thinking about things. Oh, I am wearing pants. After I don’t know how many years. And I am carrying shoes. For the two meetings that are up next, I need to be in my formal best. And it sucks, especially after you come from Goa where the best formal attire is shorts and chappal. No, the locals don’t dress up like that. They are actually among the most well-dressed people I know. But they accept with open arms if you choose to wear shorts and a tee. Unlike Mumbai and other places.

A large part of this scatteredness is that the work has picked up. And I am juggling three things right now. And there’s so much to do that am scrounging for time. I am making calls from taxis and ricks. I am eating while working. I am sleeping and thinking about things. I can now relate to those Americans that talk about how they need to do 2 jobs to make ends meet. I know that I will have to cut on my sleep if this continues.

So on work, like I said, work has picked up. And that means that I no longer have to seek help (if I can continue to deliver to existing clients). Just that the work I do is low-value and thus I get paid shit. No, this is not even building my brand per se but it’s helping me tide through. This tide through is important. A friend told me something cool. She said when her husband quit his job to do a startup, they cut their expenses so much that they would take buses and trains and avoid taxis, etc. They decided that they need to lay low for a few years and consolidate and build from thereon. They did all of that and more. And they did tide through. And today they are doing great with three houses, fancy cars, and whatnot. May be I am in that place right now. Even if the work I do is low value, it allows me to survive. And that’s what matters. I need to lay my head low, work hard and try to upgrade the value of work, and do more.

And yes, I continue to look for more work. Higher value. Point me in the direction!

Apart from this, I need to book my Goa travel. While the decision to live there and create a coffee shop is still not firmed up, I need to help a friend manage an event on the weekend and I need to be there for that. The good news is that events are making a comeback in Goa at least. The bad news is that the ticket size remains dismal. Acche din aane wale hai 🙂

Oh, I met Ashima and Parijat yesterday at their house. It’s a big feat, considering they have a dog at home that hates me. But I survived the day and we got some work done and Ashi stuffed me with some of the best Rajma Chawal (my comfort food) I’ve ever imagined in the world and we talked about all the decisions that I need to take in life.

What decisions? Here’s a list that I chatted with Ashi on…

  1. Where to live (Mumbai? Goa?)?
  2. How to get fit and live for long?
  3. How to manage money?

There were 2 more things that I have redacted.

I have to say that a simple conversation with her is so so therapeutic! I could speak freely without any fear of any judgment or bias. And while I don’t have answers but I do have direction. For example, for the Mumbai vs Goa decision, she simply asked me why do I want to get out of Mumbai and I realized I don’t have an answer, except seeking a cheaper place to live. And suddenly, places more than Goa opened up! I mean why not Delhi? Pondicherry? Pune? Thane for fuck sake! Yeah, yeah, Goa gives me access to eclectic people and creative crowds, and newer opportunities. But that’s that. If this is my years to lie low and consolidate, why get stuck on Goa?

Yes, I am more confused than ever. But I do know that the variable I was looking at was incorrect. I need to fix it. Let’s see what I decide.

Before I move onto the next thing, here’s a plug. Ashi is a homeopathic doctor for people like you and me. And pets. I have referred her to a few friends that need help with their pets and EACH person has great things to say about Ashi. You must see her website and in case you want a homeopathic opinion for your pet, do reach out to her.

Next. Car.

So I was in a car yesterday that was as big as a lavish1BHK in Mumbai. I pine for a time when I’d have a car. I am not materially attached to it. It could get scratched, bumped, and all that. It could be any make, model etc. But I need a vehicle to get around. In fact, I think I should actually live in a car and shower at the hostels and all that. After all, my best ideas come to me when am either showering or I am in transit! Lol!

What else? Nothing I guess.

I started this with a rant on Mumbai and lemme end with another Mumbai rant. This trip, I am having a bit of a lucky run. Oh, I have to mention that I am having a bit of a lucky run! I said that I am scrounging for time. Every time I miss the deadline, somehow, magically the client would push it! I know this is not sustainable and a time would come when everything would come on my head at the same time. So, need to pull socks! I have used this pulling of socks a few times. Need to expand my dictionary.

That’s it for the day.

Over and out. And no, nothing on #book2. 🙁

170221 – Morning Pages

A longish post where I have dumped all that is clouding my head. I talk about Mumbai, Goa, Money, Work, Shah Rukh Khan and more!

7:43 AM.

Am at a Starbucks. The Powai one. This is where I wrote most of #tnks from way back in 2013. Or was it 2014? Whatever it was. I used to love the early morning grinds (this one opens at 7 AM) and flurry of words that would come out. Truth be told, I miss it. I mean I still live a tiny hop away from Starbucks (4 of them!) but for some reason, the one at Powai feels like home. Things have changed – your know, ambiance, people, staff partners, what I do in life but for some reason, the Powai Starbucks feels like home!

So, the morning pages. I have quite a few things to dump on paper. I am not sure if I would have the time. I have a LOOOOOOOOoooot of things to work on. Actually, lemme start with that.

Work. So thanks to COVID and the general fuckery with which I live my life, I am struggling to make ends meet (no wonder! Mr. Garg, you are wasting 500 bucks on average coffee, you dumb-wit!) and as a result, I took on everything that came my way. Most of these things are where I need to create make. And that means I am left with very little time or energy to do things. And that means I am unable to make things move. Remember what I spoke about movement the other day? And what Sheba told me as well? That!

So, I need to find more work where I am paid well for being a mere manager. You know, not invest a lot of time and get paid for experience and expertise. Right now, I am slugging it out like a modern slave. I am paid for my time. I exchange money for time. I am not getting rich while I sleep. The hourly rate that I charge can continue to go up but at the end of the day, I am paid for the hours that I put in! And that has to change. Naval has talked about this so many times that it’s impossible to miss it. I just need to find a way to get to a point where I no longer need to charge for my time. So, that.

This is also related to what PG has been saying for years – Maker and Manager. PS: PG is probably the best essayist that we have on the Interner right now. Do read his stuff. Gold.

So that’s first thing I need to work on. Someone, help me please!

Moving on. So this trip to Mumbai (wow, did I say this trip to Mumbai?), I have been indulging – you know, watching TV, spending money and all that. And you know what I realized? I like love to spend money. The only pair of shorts I have, it was housing dirt and muck and I don’t know what else from at least 3 months. And since I don’t have a washing machine or help or even the time to let it dry after I wash it, I had to buy another one. I bought the exact same one and I loved the feeling of swiping my card on a machine at an almost fancy store (Marks and Spencer). And I am wearing it today. And I feel good about it. In fact, I was out with a friend last night (well, thug life) and while talking both she and I agreed on the following relationship between money and happiness. I call these ‘SG’s Rules of Scarcity or Abundance of Money‘. These are not really my original thoughts but a mere articulation of what I’ve read and what I understand about it.

Here we go…

  1. While money may not buy you happiness, it definitely makes your life comfortable. If you are indeed sad, you’re better off being sad in the comfort of your plush home (or the backseat of a Merc) than being sad at a place that doesn’t offer you any privacy. You know, in shared accommodations, large families, Internet (lol!), etc.
  2. While money may or may not make you happy, not having money will definitely make you sad. I am the biggest living, breathing, moving, thinking testimony of this. I operate at my best when I am comfortable.
  3. Money gives you the freedom to do what you want to do. And this ability (or inability) to do things that you want to is often is the root cause of happiness (or sadness).
  4. Money allows you to control your time. You become the master of your time and this mastery is what drives happiness or sadness in large parts.

Am sure, there are more. I will write them in a separate post and publish em here. But one thing’s for sure. I love money. I love earning And I love to spend. I can’t wait for the achche din to be back. Come on, Universe!

So that’s that. The next thing? Happy Accidents. At the Starbucks, I bumped into an old acquaintance. This is what I love about places like Mumbai and Starbucks. These places allow for serendipity to happen. Plus, there is something about a hug that a Zoom can never make happen. We are social animals and while we adapt fast (and we will), at least for me, the handshakes are as important as breathing. I just hope that I am not obsoleted to a minority that still wants to meet IRL. Sigh. That’d be sad.

Once I understood the power of living at hubs, I have tried hard to find those and move there. The move to Andheri helped me like mad. If only I had some passive source of income, I would have done a lot more. Wait…

Wait.

Epiphany just happened.

I just dawned onto me that I love Mumbai WAY too much to not live here (#facepalm). Even though I don’t have anyone here that I can call my own. Even though I hate the dirt and the filth and mess and all that. Even though the place is expensive af. But I love the convenience of living in a big city. I love that I can dream here. Unlike in other cities. I like the idea that people are open. For ideas, conversations, business, work, and all that.

But then I like the idea of being a rootless bird as well. I loved the time I spent in Goa (for all the fuckery around the Internet) and I am getting serious about a cafe in Goa. I’ve made a few phone calls, have connected with a few folks, have started to do the maths! Again, I am not sure about it. I will let it simmer in my head and see where it goes.

The point is, while I was in Goa, I loved it. Now that I am in Mumbai, I love this. I am easily swayed I guess! Let’s see where I go life takes me and what I choose and what’s in store for me. To be honest, I am very very ok with the ambiguity and randomness and all that. Just that I need to be comfortable 😀

There’s one thing though that I’d like to know. How would the world change with WFH and all that? I tend to believe that places and things that thrive on IRL human connection will continue to remain in vogue. You know places like Mumbai and businesses like films. And things that do not need you to be in the same room as others, may change radically. Places like Silicon Valley and things like technology and software.

So that. Any ideas?

Before I move to the next thing, am at 9:47. Been writing for two hours now! And I still have a lot to write about! Lemme use bullets to take notes and I will probably pick these up tomorrow. And in case I don’t, at least I would send these to my Roam.

  1. SRK (who else but Shah Rukh Khan). I dont know where to start talking about him. Or where to end. He is, well, one of his kind.
  2. Met Sid Saahil from TID Podcast yesterday and shared notes. Learned that despite him coming from an affluent background, he hustles 10X harder than what AD and I engage in at Podium. We have to pull our socks. Such rude shocks are required once in a while to keep us on course. Will write a Twitter thread about the lessons from the meeting.
  3. A documentary on Aram Nagar. I was at Aram Nagar yesterday. Realized that someone needs to make a documentary about it. I mean it is as iconic a place as any and the contributions of Aram Nagar to Bollywood has been immense! I wonder why it’s not been captured so far? May be it has been, just that I haven’t seen it yet.
  4. Writing Tips. A few days ago, I started a series of writing tips. Primarily to friends that are nonwriters. Here’s the first one. You can join the no-spam, admin-posts-only WA group here.
  5. Someone asked me what was I doing when I was 31. I had no answer. When I asked her to tell me the year (I was 31 in 2013), I could remember with great clarity where I was! I always thought people operated in terms of ages but I realized I operated in years. Dunno what to make of it. I just found it interesting and amusing. Here’s a question for you. What do you remember better? Age? Years? And what were you doing when you were 11? 21? 31? 41? 51? Do tell me!
  6. Another conversation yesterday made me realise that you need to find underserved markets that could be immensely boring! Cases in point? Recruitment for young startups, digital marketing for mom and pop shops, content farms etc etc. These are really boring and non-sexy businesses and yet they deliver exceptional opportunity!

So yeah. That.

I know it’s a lot for a day. Guess this was a long time coming. Am glad that I could finally pour things out. I just need to continue with the flow and get going on #book2. And no, I am clearly not working on #book2 today either 🙁

160221 – Morning Pages

Nothing special here. You may skip reading this one.

6:43. I slept at 2. Woke up around 15 mins ago. Not sure what all to write but a few things on the top of my head.

Its been a few days that I am in Mumbai. I ideally want life to fall into a routine of wake up -> Starbucks -> Work -> Eat -> Sleep. But it would not happen. I need to run way too many errands for way too little time that I am here for. And I want to meet quite a few people (friends, mentors, strangers etc.). This meeting with strangers has helped me find work over the years. And I need to continue to do this if I want to make my ends meet. You know, tough times call for tough decisions.

So, morning pages.

Yesterday was a long long day. I worked non-stop from 8 AM on. Till about 6. And then from 8 till 1030. Well, work was a combination of writing, editing, powerpoint-int, giving gyaan, seeking gyaan, and whatnot. After living the thug-life over the weekend, yesterday was good. Just that, when I came back home to the dump I am living in, I was incredibly sad at that. Plus, yesterday was one of those days when I did not want to come back to an empty house. No, I don’t want an object per se that wants to wait for me. But someone that I could be myself with. And allow that person to be herself. And be her home. And all that. I guess you get the drift. And no, am not crying about working hard.

Oh, I have to put this on paper. Since I was working like mad yesterday, I had way much coffee and I did not eat anything till about 5:30. The last meal was at 1 AM the previous night. So, without planning for it, I ended up eating once a day and fasting for about 16 hours. Yay for that. Let’s see if I can do the same today. I have as much packed a day as I had yesterday. Time shall tell!

Yesterday a friend asked me for tips on how to live a life of a freelancer and I realized I had no clue. What I did know is that I could find places and opportunities where I could point her to. While searching for things, I found this Twitter thread by Chuck Gopal (I love everything he does) and I think if you are thinking about going freelance, this is worth its weight in gold! Do see it.

This also made me realize that I need to act on that large idea of mine where I want to make Goa a hub for knowledge workers where they can live and work remotely from. The guide to living and working from Goa was the first step. As the next step, I want to aggregate resources, pool businesses, and invite people to work from Goa. After that I have to create an on-ground infrastructure to make this happen. I mean you may read a post and you may land in Goa. But what after that? So there’s a lot of work. Need to get going with this. #note2self

Finally, as I end this, here’s a good thing that happened. Today, I start editing / proofreading yet another book. Yay! For someone else. This is the second book I am working on. And I am getting paid for it. And this is fiction (the first one that I am still working on is biographical). I love this feeling of helping others. And this allows me to learn from what they are writing! I mean what else could I ask for in life? The only trouble is that am way too particular about things and I will probably take more time than I estimated. And I need to be able to deliver enough value that more people are keen on engaging me!

So that, I think this is about for the day! Time to get going with the day. Like I said, I have a long one!

No, nothing on #book2 today either. I think I have lost the plot with the daily notes. It sucks to not chase what fans my fire 🙁

PS: The rasa, the juice, the joy, the pleasure on these morning pages is disappearing. This has started to feel like a chore now that I do mindlessly. The amount of writing I get done is reducing by the day. I mean it requires me to think about things on the top of my head. And then write. And edit. And then publish. And all that. Of course, my writing muscle remains active. But then what? To what end? Can I make this better in some way?

So, I need a new strategy for these morning pages. Sigh. Funny the kind of questions that I trouble myself with! Chalo, over and out.

150221 – Morning Pages

I talk about how I spent the weekend, think I am thinking on and new things am planning!

8:18. I thought it was 8. Time flies. Anyhow. Morning Pages. A new week.

This one comes from, well, a Starbucks! The one at Versova. I cant imagine to tell you what a relief it is to have a business that is operational and allows you to work in peace (and offers Jazz music as background noise). I wont be surprised if I decide to stay back in Mumbai just for a Starbucks! Really!

Or maybe create something similar in Goa? I wish I had the money and I would have done that!

Anyhow, so, the weekend was spent like a thug. Watching TV, eating like a man who’s been starving for years, going to dinners, lunches, coffee dos, taking pictures, tracking the sunset, making phone calls etc etc. Primarily with friends from MDI (more on this later). I think that’s not a bad life to have if you have a stable job. I mean you get paid a bomb and you spend all that money on fancy things at fancy places with fancy people. What’s wrong with that? Who cares if young activists are being jailed? Who cares if people are losing their jobs over tweets? Farmers are anyway not our problem. So let them stay camped on the borders of Delhi. COVID is no longer a threat. Let’s party.

Damn. I feel so so so guilty of wasting time over the weekend. I should have simply worked and finished things that were open on my plate and used the time to meet people while I am in Mumbai. Damn I need to be less critical on myself 🙁

But then what’s gone is gone. I can make sure today is better! Will try to not waste time. Let’s see how it goes. On to morning pages. As I write this, I know I will not have the time to work on #book2. I will try to but I can’t promise. Let me get on with it and unlike a journal, lemme try to write about things that are clouding my head. You know, the original purpose of morning pages.

A. Mumbai vs Goa
I don’t have very structured thoughts here. Ofcourse. Lemme just dump things here. So, when I am in Mumbai, I feel I have more time on my hands. I don’t know why. It just feels like that. Maybe because I spend less time chasing the Internet? And the entire city around me trying to work and get things done and all that? Maybe because of moving around / traffic etc, I think I am a lot more planned with time and all? I haven’t been able to pinpoint. Let’s see how this week goes. And I’ll hopefully figure out the answer.

But I have to say that I spend a lot more time in traffic when I am here. I mean, on the weekend I spent 9 hours commuting. Really. 9ish hours. Andheri to Worli. Worli to Bandra and back. Worli to SoBo to Worli to Bandra to Andheri. In Goa, maybe cos I don’t venture out of North Goa, I spend far less time on travel?

So that. Guess this week will help me add many more dimensions to how I am thinking about Mumbai vs Goa thingy.

B. Friends from MDI
Like I said, over the weekend, I met friends from MDI and it was nice. I was myself and there was this tacit camaraderie that I think I miss when I am with others. I guess that’s what shared backgrounds do. I guess this is what they mean when they say that relationships compound.

The other thing I realised that I am not the life of the party. I was with friends and most of our conversations were dry, drab, philosophical and you know, boring. JKB came in and suddenly, the place and mood was so much lighter and better and funner. JK is amazing. Glad that I can call him a friend. But the point is, I am not that. No, I dont want to be that. I am just stating.

The other thing that I realised is that I do not have a lot of friends or people that I go back so long with. While its fairly easy for me to meet new people, I think I shouldve invested more in people. No, it’s not too late. I will invest starting now. I think the drive I was on where I would prioritise myself over others need changing. I need to be there for my friends when they need me. I think Vivek will laugh at this 😀

C. Starbucks.
How can I write something and not praise Starbucks? So we were at this new coffee place in Bandra where all the hipsters were hanging out. This group of friends and I were trying to find a place to sit. There was this lady sitting on the table next to it. We asked her if the table we wanted was empty. She politely said, yes it was. And we sat. And then I thought I knew her. I asked her if we’ve met. Lol, no, not as a pickup line. She said she worked at a Starbucks in BKC and now she’s here. And then, she told me that she remembered me (and not my name, which is ok) and told me that my regular order was an Americano and I would come in early and I would take the only chair and table at the outlet. And then she said you are still dressed the way you were all those months ago (formal shirt, linen shorts, chappals).

Insane how well trained these people at Starbucks are! The lady remembered how I dress up, what order I had and where I sat. And I havent been to that particular store in

Oh, here’s a pic from that new place…

Clicked by Saurabh Garg, at JavaPhile Bandra

D. My first Clubhouse
After lurking in the shadows for so long, I finally made my Clubhouse debut. In a room where we talked about books. We were to talk about a passage from a book that has left an impression on you. I talked about a para from Jack Kerouac’s brilliant para from On The Road. It goes…

…the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!”

From On the Road by Jack Kerouac

I think I enjoyed being there. Need to use it lot more.


So yeah, that’s about it for today I think. Have a crazy day / week ahead. I like this rushed life to be honest. I am not made for taking it easy!

Chalo, more tomorrow. Over and out.

140221 – Morning Pages

Nothing important on this one. Just a random piece of text from, well, a Starbucks!

9:36 AM

I am writing this from a Starbucks and I am telling you that there is no better feeling than this being able to walk-in to a store, sit on a comfortable chair, hike the laptop on a table that’s just at the right height, and a connection that works! It’s magic. Actually, it’s not magic. It’s more hygiene than anything else but when you live (or want to live) in Goa, these things look like magic!

So, morning pages.

Yesterday was interesting. I was like a vegetable and thugged it out. I binged on Brooklyn 911 and fuck it’s amazing. Exactly the kind of humor I want to have. I also saw Pride and Prejudice in parts. Fuck it’s been done so well that I actually pined for the freedom and opportunities to create things like that! Ok, too many fucks in one sentence.

The thug-life did not end at the binge. I actually went out with a few friends for dinner and drinks. No, I don’t drink. Yes, I ate like a mad man. The place where we were at, there were so many people that probably would put pre-covid parties to shame. The other shameful thing I observed was that kids as young as 16 (they looked like 16 or younger) were smoking, abusing alcohol, and living their hedonistic life. Yeah yeah, I sound like their father or that disgruntled uncle that you can’t seem to ever please.

In fact, in the spirit of living in public, here’s a confession. I am one of those that is never satisfied. I want to be divinely discontent but I think am devilishly discontent. What this does is that it leaves me asking everyone around me to push themselves to do more. And I often border on being pushy. And that means I am often not so kind when I talk to people. You know that question that Indian parents ask when you score 98%? Am that! So yeah. That. Why do I bring this up? I don’t know. It just came up when I wrote about kids indulging. I don’t understand how people do not work and while time like that. Vegetative-ness is not for me.

So that. The house still remains in mess. To a point that I dont even want to start cleaning it. But then, me being me, I did start with it. At least the bedroom. The problem with the rest of the house is that there’s no space to even walk. Yeah. Mumbai houses. And the boxes that contain all my life’s things. Imagine. Life reduced to a few boxes and eventually an urn of ash. And not even that if you decide to walk into the forest (the way I want to go, when I go). Fuck reminds me of Carl Sagan. Do see this.

Do that.

Oh, I have been sending some “writing tips” to a people on Whatsapp. I am not sure they work for people but I really enjoy writing those. In case you want in, you can join this admin-only group.

Guess that’s about it. I know I have more to say. I know I should say more. I know there is more to morning pages than a quick journal. I know I know a lot. I know I dont know even more than what I know. I know am merely indulging now and have stopped making sense a long time ago. I know. I know.

Over and out.

130221 – Morning Pages

Just another update from just another day in the string of days that seem to blend into one another. Wow, what a line!

8:34 AM

Starbucks! Yay! This thing about being able to walk into a place that’s ready to help you get to work (AC, Internet, Coffee, Chair, Table, etc) is one of the most underrated things in life. Thanks to this “predictability”, yesterday I shuttled between three different outlets and I spent close to 2000 bucks. No, I did not pay for coffee per se – it was more for ambiance, AC, cleanliness, politeness, friendly nods, and more! Businesses in Goa need to understand this tweak how they work.

So I have a lot on my plate today. While most people tend to chill on the weekend, my weekends are more packed. Simple reason. I try to do things that I haven’t had the time to work on during the week. And most people that need me to get back to them do not work. And thus I have a super relaxed time when I can do things that I want to, at my pace, in the way I like to.

No this is not a rant. I am sorry if it comes acorss like that.

Moving on. The morning pages journal for the day. Lemme address this conundrum between pages and journal. When I started, it was supposed to be a tool to help me with my creativity. But when I started writing, this became a journal where I would rant and write about things that happened in the day that went by and the things that I have planned for the day ahead. So, the “creative” journal has reduced to a daily journal. I feel that I need to break out of this habit of journaling but then I don’t want to. I mean I started this more than two months ago. Proud to say that I have not missed a single day. There were days when I was busy – those days I wrote less. But I did. Along the way, learned discovered quite a few things about myself. I think this is one of the best habits I have acquired in the recent past. I just need to nudge this to create better things. If you are reading this and want to pick a hobby that makes you better, morning pages.

Anyhow. Onto the pages.

Like I said, I have a lot on my plate today. And a lot more on my mind. Lemme try and pour it all here. Like always, in no specific order.

I am shifting to a calendar-based system for managing time. And funnily I was supposed to write these from 8 to 9. And one of those people that I really care for called and she wanted to chat about life and work and the calendar went for a toss. Sigh. But then the idea of a calendar is to be able to do more and enable more people like here. So, if I cant shift my calendar to give as much time to my people, no point. Oh, and she told me that apart from her vitals, everything (including lunch is on her Google Calendar). Guess this is a sign!

Met M&m yesterday. Kids are probably the most amazing creation of the universe. Though I maintain that I hate em, I like these two. Each time I meet them, I am inspired to do more. To be able to give them a better life. No, I can’t do better than what is already being done for them but still.

I had a call with a random person about some work. Think of it as a pitch per se. We were to figure out if we could work together. When I spoke to him, I found that the guy had done enough research on me to know that I am from Hissar and I like Nagraaj and Super Commando Dhruv! I am not sure I have ever written that! The dude was that good with his research. Damn living in public!

The other thing that I did yesterday was to move data from cloud on the new M1. The offline copies would help me cope the Goa Internet. Oh, the piece I wrote about Goa? I am so so grateful that I did. It is making me meet so many new people and making me learn so many things and sparking so many ideas that I am tempted to write more. The only trouble is that for someone like me, writing takes far far longer than what it takes for other people. So that!

I think this is it for the day. When I started writing, I had thought I would write a lot more but I guess not. May be tomorrow.

And no, no #book2 today either. There’s work to be done 🙁

120221 – Morning Pages

Large part of what I wrote today is a rant. You may want to skip reading this. Nothing interesting or insightful here 🙁

7:45.

I am at the Starbucks where I wrote #tnks from. Powai one. I have some really incredible memories of this place. In fact, I love Powai better than all of Mumbai. I wish I would live here. If I do choose to move to Goa, I will probably find a few friends in various parts of Mumbai and make a shacking arrangement with them. This is very unlike me where I have wanted my privacy and my room and my comfort. But then, desperate times call for desperate measures. What to do.

Ok. Morning pages for the day. Like yesterday, I am rushed af. There is like a million things that I need to do. I have never been this rushed in life. I mean I am sure I would have been but I feel the pressure. The sad part is that all this pressure is neither giving me enough to make my ends meet nor creating a brand for me that I can leverage in the future. I often think that I should’ve taken the easy way out of Naukri and by this time I would be making a pot of money and would have had a comfortable house and a fancy car and those two foreign holidays. And no, there’s nothing wrong with it. It’s a very comfortable position to be in. What if you need to manage random politics? What if you are loaning the best years of life to help others realize their dreams? Won’t it be better from wake-shit-shower-work-work–work-work–work-work–work-work–work-work-eat-quickily-work-work-tindering-aimlessly-hoping-for-matches-sleep cycle that never seems to end? Ok rant ho gaya.

Moving on.

So Mumbai. Day 2. After almost 3.5 months. There are quite a few thoughts in my head that I want to pour on paper here but I don’t know where to start.

Do I like being in Mumbai?
I don’t know yet. But I like that Internet works. Things are easily accessible. Internet works. I mean the Internet at a random Starbucks in Mumbai works better than the co-working space in Goa that has the best internet!

Do I miss Goa?
Hell yes. I do.

Will I choose Mumbai over Goa?
I don’t know yet. I am undecided. Like VK said, I need to chase money. I’d go wherever money takes me. So that.

Chalo, lemme take a random track altogether. I’ve been asking people on Twitter for music that I could listen to. Vijesh (someone that I’d NEVER EVER ignore) recommend that I listen to Osho Jain. The dude’s called Osho! So I decided I would check him. Cut to the Mumbai house. Around the new year, I had participated in a couple of Secret Santas and there were a couple of books waiting for me. I opened those today in the morning. One of the books in there was by the Osho. Too many Osho’s in life happening too fast. I don’t know what to make of it. But what I do know is that Osho Jain’s music sounds like the kinds I would want to listen to! I love it! Here’s some

So that.

What else.

Ok. The house is in a mess. And I don’t even have the time to clean it. Since I have not really lived there, I don’t even have a house-help that I could rely on for all the chores. And I need to find one pronto. I hate hate hate hate mess. I should’ve probably called ahead and got it cleaned but I am yet to unpack all the boxes that my stuff is wrapped in since I moved. I thought I would spend a couple of days cleaning things but I am not sure that I have the time to do so. I am on a clock you know (need to back in Goa by 20th max).

Guess this is it for the day. Too much on my head. To a point that I was tired exasperated last night.

I was so fucked that for a change, I felt the need to have someone around me. Guess old age is catching up. Need to become more stable, more stoic, more detached, more atamnirbhar.

Come on, Mr. Garg!

No, no #book2 today either. I am slacking like a bitch. Sorry, Krishna.

110221 – Morning Pages

A quick post on talking about the fact that I am back in Mumbai! Yay! Even though I would go back in about 10 days.

8:11. I have 19 minutes to do this.

Today’s one of those days where I cant even die. AA would laugh at this but it’s true. So, the things am thinking about are…

I am in Mumbai as I write this. At least till the 19th.

I am here after exactly three months (went to Delhi for Diwali on 10th Nov and then Goa on 6th Dec). When I reached home, a rude shock awaited. The house was in a mess. There were inches of dust, dead bodies of cockroaches, moss on the furniture, the stale smell in the almirahs, and whatnot. If you know me, I want things to be perfect af and I am anal about cleanliness. I was fucked in the head. But then I was too tired from the damn train journey and I slept. Fuck I am at that place in life where bodily comforts are more important than mental stimulation. Old age, boys and girls, sucks!

Lemme talk about the train. Yesterday I said that I will see if I could work from train. I am happy to report that the experiment failed gloriously. I couldn’t get a single thing done. The train journey is way too uncomfortable and obtrusive. The guy sitting next to me could not stop peeping into my laptop, my phone, my shirt, and I don’t know what else.

And that means that I have this BIG pile of things that I should’ve done yesteryday. And thus this rush to get over with these morning pages before 8:30.

So, the good thing is that I am writing from a Starbucks. Love that the store is clean, AC is perfect, cheap jazz is playing. And I just got myself a coffee. After a few days. I wish Goa offered such predictability. But guess that’s the charm of living in Goa and that’s what makes life fun. But the point is, at a Starbucks, I come into the rhythm, the zone as fast as, well, a train.

Anyhow, there’s more but there’s no time. This tweet by Anusha summarised my life so perfectly.

Let’s see if I can find more time during the day to write more. Till then, over and out. And its 8:29! Fuck so cool!

PS: This is not really the morning pages that Julia talks about but I had to keep the streak going.